head teacher Garry de Castro-Morland with children from Starbeck Primary Academy
head teacher Garry de Castro-Morland with children from Starbeck Primary Academy

New artwork on display at Fern House


This week (Wednesday), children from Starbeck Primary Academy unveiled new artwork at Fern House on Spa Lane in Starbeck.

The artwork takes pride of place in the reception area of Harrogate Borough Council’s new homeless accommodation that was officially opened in April.

The accommodation, which provide housing and support for Harrogate residents, is made up of 19 self-contained bedrooms complete with en-suite bathrooms and kitchen facilities. Two of which are fully accessible.

As well as accommodation, Fern House provides a complete support package for individuals who are homeless. This will include health and wellbeing, support for any mental health issues, financial guidance as well as any further advice or information they may require.

The facility also provides laundry and kitchen facilities, 24-hour reception desk, a large conference room as well as a meeting area. It is hoped the latter two spaces will be used by other services and community groups in the future.

From the start of the project, the borough council were keen to involve the local community. Not only have Starbeck Primary Academy provided a wonderful new piece of art, they also came up with the name for the facility.

Garry de Castro-Morland, head teacher at Starbeck Primary Academy, said:

The children at Starbeck Primary Academy are delighted to have been able to develop a close relationship with Fern House.

During the last year, pupils have learnt all about the importance of supporting homeless people and even chose the name ‘Fern House’ as part of school-wide survey.

Most recently, pupils in Year 5 worked on a collaborative piece of art with the theme ‘the four seasons’ which is now proudly on display in the entrance of the building.

We are always looking for new ways to support local community services and are delighted to continue our relationship with Fern House by helping with gardening in the area behind the facility.


Maggie Gibson, Harrogate Borough Council’s housing needs manager, said:

Sadly, for a number of reasons, some people find themselves homeless and with often, nowhere to turn.

This new temporary accommodation not only provides a safe and comfortable environment for those in need. It also allows us to work with individuals, offer support and guidance to help address any issues that may have led them to being homeless.

We’re honoured that teachers and children from Starbeck Primary Academy understand the importance of helping every resident of the district, especially those that may need additional support.

The new artwork looks amazing and we can’t thank the school enough for getting involved. We hope the children enjoyed creating it as much as we do having it on display.

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